The Westcomb Apoc Jacket was first reviewed on this site back in 2010 when it won our gear of the year award. Since then Westcomb has updated the design of the jacket but has maintained the use of Polartech Neoshell fabric for its breathability and waterproofness. Back in 2010 the Neoshell fabric was relatively new to the market and six years later (while it’s still not as popular as Gore-Tex) it’s become more popular and is my personal favourite waterproof/breathable fabric. Neoshell provides hardshell protection with softshell comfort and versatility, and has an inherent stretch that won’t impede your range of motion during activities. Unlike Gore-Tex, NeoShell is breathable at any temperature, and does not require pressure to build up on the inside for its air permeability to function properly. But, enough about Neoshell. Let’s look at how the Apoc Jacket has changed since its inception:
The Westcomb Apoc Jacket with Polartec Neoshell performs better than your average Gore-Tex jacket.
The Westcomb Apoc is still a top of the line, all-mountain jacket. But this redesigned version now features built-in pit zips, which as far as I know is a first for a Neoshell jacket. Traditionally Neoshell jackets don’t have pit zips since the fabric itself is supposedly breathable enough. But in my opinion you can never have enough breathability. The other big change with the new Apoc is that the torso is now adjustable with hidden shock cords. This gives you the ability to streamline the fit if you are wearing fewer or thinner mid layers, or simply want a trimmer, more form fitting appearance.
Below you’ll find a complete list of all the Apoc Jacket’s features (both new, and carried over from the original design):New features on the redesigned Apoc Jacket:
If you’re looking for a companion to the Apoc jacket, then consider the super-light, packable soft shell Crest Hoody. Its minimalist design is ideal for fast and light adventures that require wind protection and breathability. The trim fitting Crest Hoody is made of Pertex Equilibrium which is lightweight, quick drying and incredibly packable. It retails for $199US and is an excellent companion to the Apoc while ski touring. Wear the Crest Hoody on the way up for its breathability and protection from wind and snow, and then layer it under the Apoc for the ski down.
I was a big fan of the original Apoc Jacket when it was released, primarily because it was one of the first Neoshell Jackets to hit the market. Not only did it offer up superior breathability and fabric stretch, but its design was super simple yet effective with features you require and nothing more. With the addition of pit zips, I think the Apoc has gotten even better. However, they have added some styling features that I could live without. Namely the adjustable torso and hand warmer pocket baffles. I find the adjustable torso to be a little unnecessary as the jacket is not that long. I found that using the adjustment makes the jacket fit like those 3/4 length ski jackets of the late 80’s; Not good. The pocket baffles, while somewhat functional for expanding the volume of the pockets get in the way of the interior of the pockets when retrieving items and for overall hand comfort.
The Apoc has evolved form a purely light and fast, utilitarian ski-touring workhorse to more of an all-round ski resort jacket that has added some bulk and weight with a heavier face fabric and subtle design changes. While these are not negative qualities for most, the Apoc’s more mainstream appeal does make it less effective as a ski touring specific jacket. But then again not every one wants a one-trick-pony.
Sizes: S, M, L, XL
Colour: Black, Eclipse, Sulphur, Vermillion
Weight: 428g / 17oz
Material: Polartec NeoShell 500
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